Manifesto

Mission Statement:

Audio drama is one of the most intimate and expressive dramatic mediums, rivaling theater and film in poetic, visual, and narrative qualities. Many people are unaware of this - a stigma lingers that "radio drama" is a scratchy, cartoonish thing of the past, as if people thought that cinema ended with silent movies, unaware of all the great films made since that time. In reality, audio and radio drama is the great frontier of modern theater - with subtle, intimate performances and powerful, gripping stories.

My aim is to promote a discussion of the art, sociology, theory, and future of this remarkable artistic form. The current state of audio drama is precarious, but through careful consideration of how content is presented, distributed, and interacted with, I believe that the radio and audio drama community can grow and prosper and reach an even wider audience.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Interviews Coming Soon, plus more on Mortimer

Since one of my previous posts made its way to Twitter, I suddenly realized that some actual person might read this blog. So I shall state unequivocally: I do not believe that Jeremy Mortimer is an evil wizard. But you never know.

Hyperbole aside, my point is that radio drama is a fully fledged medium without corresponding fully-fledged institutions. Although my degree is in film, I minored in sociology. One of the concepts I learned (from Durkheim, har har) is the idea that society is like a vast organism, with each part fulfilling a function to create stability in perpetuity. Even the rocky unpleasant bits. If you apply this idea to cultural products, you might notice how different institutions work together to perpetuate the art forms that they focus on. Doctor Who is my favorite example, and one that I will continue to use compulsively. There are content producers, critics, fans, factual literature, conventions, local organizations, websites, and highly specialized nooks and crannies for a fan of the program to delve into. Together, they make for a healthy community of listeners and producers.

The argument, in the end, is this - any content producer (the BBC being the major player in this case) can and should pay attention to the ancillary social and cultural institutions that correspond to their content. Doctor Who's institutions arose organically, but with key support from the BBC at crucial times. Radio drama needs that type of support now. The reason it needs it now is because, as content delivery changes and digitizes, we stand poised either on an audio drama renaissance, or an audio drama disintegration. The cost of making it a renaissance is almost nothing.

But what I really want to announce is this:

Exclusive interview with acclaimed playwright John Fletcher!
Coming Soon.

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